Messi, a puma, was unlike most wild or captive large cats. In Russia, this large cat lived in a one-bedroom apartment. The puma was born in confinement in a Russian zoo but suffered from a variety of health issues. Messi was confined in a small enclosure at the zoo when he was two months old. The unfortunate creature was also underweight.
Muscle weakness, rickets, and a urinary tract infection resulted. The zoo opted against releasing the animal into the wild because pumas are not native to Russia. Messi was also unable to live in another zoo or animal sanctuary due to his sickness. As a result, the zoo chose to put him down. Fortunately, Aleksandr and Mariya Dmitriev, a Russian couple, heard about the ill cub.
After speaking with other puma breeders and learning everything they could about the animal’s upkeep and care, they took a chance and approached the zoo about adopting Messi. The zoo, to their astonishment, consented. The couple had long wished to get a large cat such as a lynx. Messi being a house cat, Aleksandr believed, was part of their fate.
The couple even wondered whether it was correct to adopt an exotic pet. However, they knew if they did not adopt the puma, the animal would not be able to survive. Taking care of Messi was a significant challenge in many ways. Beyond being a wild animal, the big cat needed extra medical attention and care. When the couple had brought him home, the puma could barely walk. At first, Messi found it very difficult to walk with the couple. However, after several months of taking vitamins, Messi could walk for 1.5 miles and even jump a little.
Even though the couple had nursed the big cat back to health, Messi was only two-thirds of an average puma size. The couple initially lived in a one-bedroom apartment and did their best to accommodate Messi’s needs. They converted their hallway into Messi’s den and had a tree placed on the bamboo walls. Even their bathtub had turned into the world’s most enormous kitty litter box. But eventually, they did move into a bigger house with much more room. So that Messi could move around.
Cats will stay cats regardless of their size. Messi, like smaller house cats, enjoyed playing with circular objects. However, he preferred more meaningful objects such as watermelons and pumpkins to yarn bowls. Despite having a variety of toys, the puma decided that playing with a plastic bottle was the most entertaining.
Messi, like a beloved dog, requires a lot of exercises. This huge cat, unlike a dog, was not easy to train. The pair first sought unsuccessfully to find a wild animal handler. They finally located a dog training school that would train him. Messi now has the ability to respond to ten distinct orders. Messi lived a happy and healthy life with a loving family after a protracted recuperation phase.